The work health and safety legislation requires that plant and structures (including racking) are without risks to health and safety. To ensure this, racking should be inspected regularly to confirm its integrity. For guidance on inspections, refer to AS 4084: Steel storage racking.
When completing an inspection, consider the following questions:
Are beams overloaded?
Deflection (turning aside or off course) indicates overloading of the racking. Where two beams connect at an upright, the beam connectors should be parallel.
If racking is or has been overloaded, the beam connectors may be deformed (forming a ‘V’).
The amount of permanent deformation should not exceed the maximum allowed by the manufacturer. In this situation, the racking should be inspected by a competent person.
Are beams or welds damaged?
Check for obvious signs of beams being hit by a pallet or forklift. Damaged beams should be replaced. If a beam has been hit and is only showing minor damage, ensure welds are checked for cracks by a competent person.
Are beam connectors or safety clips missing?
Examine beams for damage and replace missing clips. The design of the replacements must be approved by the racking manufacturer. If clips are regularly being dislodged, contact the manufacturer or installer to determine why, and take the necessary action to fix it.
Has a beam popped out of its upright?
If a beam has popped out this will mean it is only suspended on one end connector and could collapse.
Are the anchor bolts that secure the racking to the ground loose?
Inspect anchor bolts regularly to ensure they are appropriately tightened. Adjust as required.
Edited: Katie Carr